What Defines a “Fashionable Rider” in the Show Jumping?

What draws the line between those we view as fashion icons from those who simply follow the trend?

You might think the word “fashionable” is simply defined by the outfit said rider wears into the ring but we think there is more to the concept.

Being a fashionable rider means embracing who you are and what style you enjoy—not being afraid to stand out and be different, be it bold colors, classic looks or consistency.

Take Australia’s Lane Clarke. I can spot Lane Clarke a mile away in his signature blue coat and white breeches. For years, this has been his defining look. In fact, the one time we saw him in a black jumper coat we almost didn’t recognize him!

Longines FEI World CupTM Jumping North America league, Thermal 2017, Balu U ridden by Lane Clarke (AUS). ©Kristin Lee/FEI

From time to time, you will see a person in a blue riding coat that is just too similar to the Lane Clarke blue we all know and love and you can’t help but hear the whispered comments at the back gate. “Hey, it’s like Lane’s coat” or “That is Lane’s blue.”

He has truly become a fashion icon within the equestrian world in the classist way.

Now, we all have had a specific rider come to mind when we think fashion, whether it is positive or negative—Kristin Hardin! As fan favorite in the controversial conversation of fashion, Kristin has made herself a person to watch at the shows and not just because of her talented riding abilities. We can’t wait to see what she shows up to the ring in next!


Have any of us really ever been to a show where the statement “I bet Kristin Hardin would wear that” wasn’t heard? This bold woman has definitely earned the title fashion icon in this modern world of riding apparel. We love Kristin Hardin and her unique style. The equestrian world would be so boring without her enthusiasm.

There are so many riders that have captured a place in our minds as icons that we might not even realize. What about Susie Hutchinson and her fabulous nails? Jill Humphrey and her adorable sun hats.

©NorCal Hunter Jumper Association

Will Simpson and his red, white and blue color scheme.

Or Karl Cook and his elaborate show coats.

©Rebecca Berry/FEI

So, what really defines a fashionable rider in this sport? Have we really “made the cut” for fashion icon status in this sport when we claim a color? Have custom snake boots as a defining feature? Are we an icon when others start to copy your style? Or is it when we are simply known by the way we dress?

However, you wish to define an icon, all types are needed. Classic and modern alike, they inspire us to find our own sense of fashion.

‘Till Next Time!

Chiara and Ariana Zuccolotto

About the Authors

Chiara & Ariana Zuccolotto are the fashion mavens behind Zuccolotto Designs, a luxury crossover brand founded on a love of both fashion and equestrian lifestyle. Follow their fashion exploits on Facebook!